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UTC Transmits

Before we ventured forth from UTC on Wednesday afternoon, Mr Parry told us that our attendance of the lectures would give us a unique opportunity. I am cautious of use of the word ‘unique’, but the words of our Vice Principal proved true, as I would like to relate. Certainly, it was unusual to hear eight speakers in two hours, and it was good to hear such experts on cancer, and it was even rather jolly to skip the afternoon’s chemistry lesson, but half-way through the proceedings I began to appreciate the uniqueness of the occasion. The opportunity that Mr Parry had near-promised was manifested, for me at least, as I found myself questioning Liverpool’s Professor of Chemistry about the use of nanoparticles in the treatment of cancer.

Professor Mathias Brust’s lecture was the one, among all those we heard on Wednesday, that interested me the most. About a year ago, I was greatly excited to learn of the use of certain nanoparticles that could kill cancer cells, and it was with something like wonder that I sat in a packed lecture hall and heard the professor telling us of his research into the use of gold particles to do so. Not only was I privileged to learn from his talk, but in the following break I was free to ask him questions personally, and I learnt more about the behaviour of particular nanoparticles with cancer cells, healthy cells, and bacteria.

To speak with a professor at the University on his own subject when that very subject had previously seized my attention was an experience not to be forgotten. It was a little like a foreigner to English sport being captivated by cricket one month, and being introduced to a Lancashire bowler the next.